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today's leftovers

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  • Want A More Secure Computer At The Cost Of Performance? Linux 5.8 Landing L1d Flushing

    For those very concerned about CPU data sampling vulnerabilities, the Linux 5.8 kernel comes with the ability to flush the L1 data cache on each context switch. That's good for security, but will hurt the system performance with all the excess L1 cache flushing.

    This work stems from a proposal earlier this year to flush the L1d cache on context switches due to recent snoop assisted data sampling vulnerabilites or the cache data leaked via side channels. This work was carried out by an Amazon engineer so presumably there is some interest in offering this functionality in the AWS space.

  • AMD Radeon Linux Driver Sees Patches For New "Sienna Cichlid" GPU

    Still digging through the 207 patches for the AMD Radeon Sienna Cichlid, but will update if seeing anything else of note. For the most part it's leveraging the existing Navi code paths but the usual churn surrounding firmware, clock-gating / power management differences, and other modifications in the usual spots for bringing up new hardware. The main code additions primarily pertain to the new DCN3 and VCN3 blocks.

    Given the timing of these patches, the AMD Sienna Cichlid won't be mainlined until the Linux 5.9 merge window opening in August and then releasing in stable around October. That timeframe at least does point to Sienna Cichlid likely being the "RDNA 2" graphics card launch coming later in the calendar year.

  • 2020-06-01 | Linux Headlines

    The Linux kernel packs version 5.7 with exciting additions, version 2.2 of the Foliate eBook reader is out with support for many more formats, and members of the Association of American Publishers sue the Internet Archive over their library lending practices.

  • Ubuntu Cinnamon Remix 20.04 LTS overview | Ubuntu, traditionally modern.

    In this video, I am going to show an overview of Ubuntu Cinnamon Remix 20.04 LTS and some of the applications pre-installed.

  • SUSE Update Infrastructure Access Through the Data Center

    In Step 2 Toward Enhanced Update Infrastructure Access the time-line for enabling access to the SUSE update infrastructure in the Public Cloud via routing through the data center was announced. As of June 1, 2020 we have started the work necessary to make this possible for all regions in AWS, Azure, and GCE. This marks the beginning of the final phase of a process that started almost 1 year ago with A New Update Infrastructure For The Public Cloud. We expect to have everything completed by no later than the end of June 2020, but will most likely be much faster. The changes from a global IP based access control mechanism to an instance based access mechanism apply to both SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server For SAP Applications (SLES For SAP) on-demand instances and any images released in the future that might access the update infrastructure.

  • Learn how to save money, reduce complexity with SUSE Manager [Ed: Linux has been around since the 1970s, it says. OK, whatever...]

    “The first is cost,” he says. “Linux has been around since the 1970s and has come a long way in that time. In one month (April 2020), Linux installations grew from 1,3% of the total installed base to a 3%. This might not sound like a lot, but it represents massive growth. For some Linux distributions, the grow rate was better than 600%.”

    [...]

    Brink points out that switching to a Linux front-end and an effective back-end management tool could save organisations a massive chunk of their end user license costs.
    SUSE Manager monitors an organisation’s infrastructure and manages how they deploy services on to front-end devices from a central point.

  • OSI Charting a Course for 2020 and Beyond [Ed: Why does the OSI take pride in becoming a home for a Microsoft front group like ClearlyDefined?]

    The key to understanding how we move forward is to first remember how we got here. OSI as we know it didn't exist until 2013.

    Founded in 1998, the organization was held together in its first decade through strong board leadership in Michael Tiemann (2001-2012) and Danese Cooper (2002-2011). Deb Bryant (2012-present), Karl Fogel (2011-2014), Mike Milinkovich (2012-2018), and Simon Phipps (2010-2020) helped OSI begin professionalizing, by hiring General Manager Patrick Masson (2013-present), and becoming more democratic, with the introduction of a community-elected board. Molly de Blanc (2016-2020), Allison Randal (2014-2019), and Stefano “Zack” Zacchiroli (2014-2017) fostered better ties with the free software community. Richard Fontana (2013-2019) elevated legal discussions, taking OSI’s licensing work from knowledgeable hackers to expert practitioners and defining a review process. And Pam Chestek (2019-present) has brought a new level of professionalism to the license review process.

    This is a reductionist and inevitably incomplete view of OSI’s history, but the point is this: OSI has come a long way, and I am forever grateful to the talented and generous individuals who collectively invested decades to get us here.

    Over the last seven years, OSI has: sustained its core mission, shaped policy around the globe, worked tirelessly to mitigate open washing, built an alliance of more than 125 organizations representing hundreds of thousands of people, provided a home for projects like ClearlyDefined, and rolled out programs like FLOSS Desktops for Kids and Open Source Technology Management courses with Brandeis University.

  • Priyanka Sharma Joins CNCF as General Manager

More in Tux Machines

Programming Leftovers

  • I built my own camera with a Raspberry Pi 4

    The Raspberry Pi is a super tiny computer that is highly programmable. People have used these to program everything from smart mirrors, to portable arcades, to COVID-19 case counters, and even super smart, super techie greenhouses. They are tiny boxes that — if you know how to code — can do pretty much anything.

    For my build, I used the $50 HQ Camera Mod, a Raspberry Pi 4 computer, a USB-C portable 10,000mAh charger, a 3.5-inch touchscreen, jumper wires, a mini push button switch, the body of a Ninoka NK-700 35mm camera, and two vintage C-mount lenses.

  • Customizing my Linux terminal with tmux and Git

    I use tmux, a terminal multiplexer technology, to manage my terminal experience. At the bottom of the image above, you can see my green tmux bar. The [3] at the bottom indicates this terminal is the third one: each terminal runs its own tmux session. (I created a new one to make the font larger, so it's easier to see in this screenshot; this is the only difference between this terminal and my real ones.) The prompt also looks funny, right? With so much information jammed into the prompt, I like to stick in a newline so that if I want to do impromptu shell programming or write a five-step pipeline, I can do it without having things spill over. The trade-off is that simple sequences of commands—touch this, copy that, move this—scroll off my screen faster. [...] The first bit in the prompt is the bit I like the most: one letter that lets me know the Git status of the directory. It is G if the directory is "(not in) Git," K if the directory is "OK" and nothing needs to be done, ! if there are files unknown to Git that must be added or ignored, C if I need to commit, U if there is no upstream, and P if an upstream exists, but I have not pushed. This scheme is not based on the current status but describes the next action I need to do. (To review Git terminology, give this article a read.) This terminal functionality is accomplished with an interesting Python utility. It runs python -m howsit (after I installed howsit in a dedicated virtual environment).

  • Compare the speed of grep with Python regexes

    As we were converting our Shell scripts to Python anyway I thought I could rewrite it in Python and go over the file once instead of 20 times and use the Regex engine of Python to extract the same information.

    The Python version should be faster as we all know file I/O is way more expensive than in-memory operations.

    After starting conversion it turned out to be incorrect. Our code became way slower. Let's see a simulation of it.

  • Compare the speed of Perl and Python regexes

    The regex engine in Perl is much faster than the regex engine of Python.

    The are both slower than grep as measured when I compares Python with grep.

  • SSH Emergency Access

    Why would you want this? Only as an option of last resort. A backdoor into your servers when, for whatever reason, nothing else works.

    Why use certificates instead of public/private keys for emergency access?

    Passive revocation. Certificates expire; public keys don't. You can mint an SSH certificate valid for 1 minute, or even 5 seconds. Once it expires, the certificate will become unusable for new connections. This is perfect for occasional emergency access.

    You'll be able to create a certificate for any account on your hosts and send short-lived certificates to colleagues as needed.

  • Cartesi Launches 'Descartes' SDK Portal - Future of DApps

    Cartesi, the most recent Binance Launchpad IEO announced the launch of their Descartes SDK Documentation portal. The SDK Portal represents a leap forward for the Cartesi team in fulfilling their ambition in bridging the world of Linux open-sourced software, with the inherent security benefits of blockchain technology.

  • Cartesi launches Decartes SDK bringing blockchain dapp development to Linux

    The Cartesi Foundation today announced the launch of the Decartes software development kit and developer portal to enable developers to build distributed ledger blockchain apps using the Linux operating system. The SDK, which is currently an alpha test version, will allow developers to use mainstream software and libraries to develop distributed apps, or dapps, more easily while also keeping the security and capabilities of the blockchain.

  • Cartesi Launches SDK and Developer Portal Making DApp Development Feasible with Linux

    Cartesi, an innovator in the blockchain space, today announces the publishing of the alpha version of its Descartes Software Development Kit (SDK) and developer portal in line with its roadmap. Erick Demoura, CEO & Co-Founder of Cartesi said, "With this SDK release, we prove our continued commitment to making DApps powerful and easy to build. The SDK launch will allow developers who are already in the blockchain space to perform heavy computations and to get the convenience and the tools they were lacking before. Our vision is to make it possible, in the future, for any developer to build on top of Cartesi, to remove the boundaries and to make broad adoption of DApps a reality."

  • Isolating PHP Web Sites

    If you have multiple PHP web sites on a server in a default configuration they will all be able to read each other’s files in a default configuration. If you have multiple PHP web sites that have stored data or passwords for databases in configuration files then there are significant problems if they aren’t all trusted. Even if the sites are all trusted (IE the same person configures them all) if there is a security problem in one site it’s ideal to prevent that being used to immediately attack all sites. [...] The Apache PHP module depends on mpm_prefork so it also has the issues of not working with HTTP/2 and of causing the web server to be slow. The solution is php-fpm, a separate server for running PHP code that uses the fastcgi protocol to talk to Apache. Here’s a link to the upstream documentation for php-fpm [4]. In Debian this is in the php7.3-fpm package.

  • Template Haskell recompilation

    I was wondering: What happens if I have a Haskell module with Template Haskell that embeds some information from the environment (time, environment variables). Will such a module be reliable recompiled? And what if it gets recompiled, but the source code produced by Template Haskell is actually unchaned (e.g., because the environment variable has not changed), will all depending modules be recompiled (which would be bad)?

  • Breathing life into the (Emacs) cperl-mode

    If you are an Emacs user, you might know or even use cperl-mode. I am using it, more or less since my first days with Perl. Back then, newsgroups were a thing, and Ilya Zakharevich recommended it occasionally. In older times cperl-mode was shipped with Perl, today it is part of Emacs.

  • From the user perspective, Perl strings have no bugs and work well.

    I feel that in the upcoming version of Perl, the core team fixes the Unicode bug as a reason to break backward compatibility Perl 5. Unicode in Perl internally has some inconsistencies due to conflicts between latin-1 and UTF-8. this is true. On the other hand, from the user's point of view, a Perl string works perfectly fine if you only accept it can't tell whether it's a decoded string or a bytes. We are solving this problem by convention.

  • Monthly Report - June

    COVID-19 seems to be still haunting us but life is getting back to normal slowly. I had the pleasure to attend the first "Conference in the Cloud". It was 3 days event. I booked 3 days off from the work so that I can focus on the event without any interruptions. It was my first experience attending event in the cloud. I found it hard to focus on the talk in general. Could it be as I was at home with kids running around? The day one itself started on a very happy note with the announcement of "Perl 7" by Sawyer X. The entire day one was dedicated to this very topic. brian d foy even had his first book "Preparing for Perl 7" launched with the announcement. Thanks to the author brian d foy, I had the pleasure to read the first copy of the book. I simply loved it. The best introductory book on Perl 7 so far. Please go and check out yourself. I have been attending Perl conference for many years now but never had the opportunity to meet Damian Conway. The "Conference in the Cloud" made it possible to watch him live for the first time. As expected, I loved his talk, although it was recorded.

  • More stupid Bash tricks: Variables, find, file descriptors, and remote operations

    This blog post is the second of two covering some practical tips and tricks to get the most out of the Bash shell. In part one, I covered history, last argument, working with files and directories, reading files, and Bash functions. In this segment, I cover shell variables, find, file descriptors, and remote operations.

  • Python Software Foundation: Announcing the PSF Project Funding Working Group

    For the past 3 years, the PSF has been working on grant funded projects to improve our internal systems and platforms. This work has been done with the Packaging Working Group, and focused on our packaging ecosystem of PyPI and pip. We have been able to show that applying directed funding to open source projects has the ability to dramatically increase the speed of development, and move our community forward in a much more sustained way than relying solely on volunteer effort. [...] The PSF has created the Project Funding Working Group to help our community seek similar funding for their own projects. We hope to expand the amount of money going into the Python community as a whole, by providing resources and advice to projects who are interested in seeking funding from external sources. Our charter starts with our intended purpose: This Working Group researches, and advises Python community volunteers on applying for external grants and similar funding to advance the mission of the PSF, which includes, but is not limited to, things such as advancing the Python core, Python-related infrastructure, key Python projects, and Python education and awareness. You can read the entire charter for more information about the vision for the group that we intend to build over the medium and long term.

Spotlighting the Top Open Source Crafting Tools

Handicraft is a term that describes many different types of work where practical and decorative objects are made by hand or by using only simple tools. Depending on your location, the phrase ‘arts and crafts’ may be more commonly used. Collective terms for handicrafts include artisanry, handicrafting, crafting, and handicraftsmanship. This article focuses on crafting using your hands. This article highlights versatile open source software that aids cross-stitching and knot design. The software featured here helps individuals create their own charts from scratch or generate charts from imported pictures. Good quality open source software in this field is very sparse, fortunately there are still a few real gems. Here’s our recommendations. Read more

Purism Launches Librem 14, Successor to Security-focused Librem 13 Product Line

Purism, a security-first hardware and software maker, has launched the Librem 14 laptop for pre-order, the successor to its popular Librem 13 laptop line. The Librem 14 was designed based on Purism’s experience with four generations of Librem 13 laptops along with customer feedback. It retains popular security features such as hardware kill switches to disable the webcam/microphone and WiFi and supports PureBoot, Purism’s high security boot firmware. The laptop comes preloaded with PureOS–Purism’s operating system endorsed by the Free Software Foundation. Read more Also: Purism Unveil a Powerful, Privacy Focused New Linux Laptop

Software Leftovers

  • The best photo-editing software in 2020 [Ed: A lot here is proprietary]

    An open-source photo editor that debuted on Unix-based platforms, GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program. Today it's available in versions for Linux, Windows and Mac. GIMP offers a wide toolset – everything you're accustomed to is within easy reach, including painting tools, colour correction, cloning, selection, and enhancement. The team that oversees development has worked hard to ensure compatibility too, so you'll be able to work with all the popular file formats without any trouble at all. You'll also find a very capable file manager built in, along similar lines to Adobe's Bridge.

  • The Best Free Software of 2020 [Ed: A lot here is not free but a trap; also proprietary]

    Open-source Audacity can record and edit audio files on more tracks than you can imagine. It then outputs exactly what you need, even to MP3 if you use a plug-in. It is perfect for noobs and pros alike, on any desktop OS.

  • The 10 Best Cross-Platform Task Apps

    Task management apps have surely made life simpler for many. There are scores of software in the market which handle a variety of tasks such as accounting software, office suits, and management tools, etc. However at times, despite having such software, it becomes challenging to hop from one task to another on your to-do-list because of priorities, different clients, and deadlines to meet. But, fortunately, there are lots of software that are dedicated for task management. Such software not only organizes workflow but also improves one’s capability to handle challenging tasks, especially when it comes to an individual task with several requirements. Through this article, we will introduce you to some of the best cross-platform task apps which will manage your business and work needs.

  • Daniel Stenberg: curl 7.71.1 – try again

    This is a follow-up patch release a mere week after the grand 7.71.0 release. While we added a few minor regressions in that release, one of them were significant enough to make us decide to fix and ship an update sooner rather than later. I’ll elaborate below. Every early patch release we do is a minor failure in our process as it means we shipped annoying/serious bugs. That of course tells us that we didn’t test all features and areas good enough before the release. I apologize.

  • Daniel Stenberg: Video: testing curl for security
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  • The Month in WordPress: June 2020

    June was an exciting month for WordPress! Major changes are coming to the Gutenberg plugin, and WordCamp Europe brought the WordPress community closer together. Read on to learn more and to get all the latest updates.